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Bears & small handguns
Posted by Mark on Jun 17 2003
I usually carry a 2 1/2" Ruger SP101 (5 shot .357 mag) with me in the Bush. I also carry a .450 Marlin during the summer when big game seasons haven't opened yet, or a hunting rifle during open seasons.
The Ruger is so small it fits in my waistband or pocket, and it's easy to forget it's there. Will it blow a bear away? No. I carry it because the rifle is often hanging on the tree in camp, in the boat, in the tent, in the pickup, etc., and the bears always seem to choose time and place. My hope is that if I ever have a bear on me, and I'm lucky enough to get the Ruger into my hand, it might get him off of me long enough for me to crawl or drag myself to my rifle (which never should have been out of my hands, but logically will be most of the time).
The double action revolver is the choice weapon for this. There's no safety to have to fool with, it's loaded and ready to rock and roll with a pull of the trigger, but (with it's long trigger pull) is still quite safe in that tactical readiness. My Ruger has had the hammer bobbed (so as not to catch on anything), and I added a "clip", or "hook" between the grip and frame that hangs the weapon on my waistband with the piece inside my pants so it doesn't fall down inside my pants. Most folks can stand right with me and not even notice that it's there.
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